Foreign Language Terms Vocabulary Practice (page 4)
Foreign Language Terms Vocabulary Practice
Words in Context
The following exercise will help you figure out the meaning of some words from the vocabulary list by reading context clues. After you have read and understood the paragraph, explain the context clues that helped you with the meaning of the vocabulary word. Refer to the answer section at the end of this chapter for an explanation of the clues.
At the party, I watched as a young man introduced himself as an entrepreneur to a naïve young woman, and then continued to brag about the business he recently opened. The young woman was so innocent that she didn't even realize that the man was flirting with her. For her sake, I joined the conversation rather abruptly by making a political comment about our government's laissez-faire policy regarding economic regulation. I explained that it was ridiculous that our government did not see itself as responsible for regulating economic relations in our country because many low-income people suffered as a result. The young entrepreneur seemed confused at first by my apparent non sequitur because it had absolutely nothing to do with his previous statement regarding his business. Yet he did not want to appear gauche in front of the young woman so he smiled and politely asked me to explain my view on laissez-faire policies. At that point, the young woman excused herself and said that she was feeling a slight malaise and thought she should go home to rest. The young entrepreneur quickly suggested that they rendezvous at the park the following day, but the young woman politely declined.
Insert the correct word from the vocabulary list into the following sentences.
- She couldn't pinpoint exactly what was bothering her, but she felt a general _____.
- In my favorite movie, the main character, Ray, has a _____ against the mob boss who bankrupted his father.
- The college graduate was too _____ to realize that his boss wouldn't give him a vacation unless he asked for it.
- The prospective college freshman was so nervous during her interview that she answered her first question with a(n) _____; it was irrelevant to what the admissions officer had asked.
- We arranged that if we got lost, we would _____ in the lobby of the hotel.
- On the first day of class, he wrote a(n) _____ about his house to practice his descriptive writing.
- The young actress hated playing a(n) _____, but she always got those parts because she was young and attractive.
- She went to dinner with some friends at a very fancy restaurant and felt _____ because she didn't know which fork to use for her salad.
- My dad always speaks in _____ when he gives me advice. For example, the other day, he told me not to count my chickens before they hatch.
- My mother is a car _____; she knows everything there is to know about cars and loves to test drive different models.
- Her art teacher said her sculpture was _____ because she used both metal and plastic in a way he had never seen before.
- When Kathy asked Sylvia if she wanted to go to the World Series with her, she was surprised that Sylvia was _____ about it, but Sylvia explained that she had been to the World Series five years in a row, and it was starting to get boring.
- The young musician showed such _____ when he played the guitar; he played very difficult pieces without missing a note and seemed to enjoy himself immensely.
- The _____ was very proud when he opened the doors of his new pet-supply store on the first day of business.
- She had just graduated from law school, but she already looked like the _____ of a lawyer with her expression, briefcase, and no-nonsense professional suit.
- The politician argued against the _____ policy because she felt that if economic matters were not regulated in the country, large companies would take advantage of consumers.
- The plot of many TV sitcoms seems to revolve around a(n) _____; there is some big misunderstanding, which results in an embarrassing situation, but it is usually resolved by the end of the show.
- When she graduated from high school, it was a(n) _____; she had completed all of the requirements.
- At the ballet, the young dancer made her _____ in the second act.
- Most advertisements seem to include _____ values because middleclass people are able to buy the items being advertised.
The following exercise lists vocabulary words from this lesson. Each word is followed by four answer choices. Three of them are synonyms of the vocabulary word in bold. Your task is to choose the one that is NOT a synonym.
- cutting edge
- non sequitur
- clear line of thought
- short piece
- literary piece
- original statement
Knowing a word's language of origin will help you spell and pronounce it correctly.
Choose the word from the vocabulary list that means the opposite, or most nearly the opposite, of the following groups of words.
- sophisticated, graceful, classy, worldly
- wise, mature, complicated, sophisticated
- poor, not materialistic, working class
- incomplete, reversible, disputable
- old, wise, masculine
- boredom, disinterest, despondent
- clear, comfortable, easily understand situation
- excitement, enthusiasm, wide-eyed, naïve
- friendship, peaceful relationship, reconciliation
- novice, uninformed, first-timer
Match the word in the first column with the corresponding word in the second column.
- debut a. a young girl
- aficionado b. lacking social graces
- avant-garde c. a meeting place
- élan d. apathetic
- gauche e. spirit
- naïve f. a complicated misunderstanding
- vendetta g. a statement that does not relate to the previous statement
- vignette h. a completed fact
- cliché i. a feeling of sickness
- malaise j. an overused statement
- entrepreneur k. a short descriptive piece
- epitome l. a feud characterized by acts of retaliation
- fait accompli m. a fan or devotee
- rendezvous n. artistically innovative
- ingenue o. having middle-class values
- laissez-faire p. first appearance
- imbroglio q. one who starts his/her own business
- bourgeois r. an example or the embodiment of something
- non sequitur s. a political doctrine, which supports government deregulation of economic matters
- blasé t. innocent, simple
Many of the words from this chapter are used in articles about art, politics, and history. Read a newspaper or magazine article about art or architecture, and an article about contemporary or historical politics, and write down all of the foreign words you come across. How do you know if a word is a foreign word? How is it being used in the article? Add these words to your vocabulary list and look up the definition.
Now that you know these words, make a note when and where you see them. Think about the following questions: When do people use these words? What effect does it have on the piece of writing you are reading? Why have these particular words become such a regular part of our vocabulary?
Choose the word from the vocabulary list that best fits into the crossword puzzle. You can check your answers at the end of the chapter following the answers to the questions.
Words in Context
In the first sentence, we learn that the young man is an entrepreneur and that he is talking about a business he started, so we can conclude that being an entrepreneur has something to do with starting one's own business. The young woman is described as naïve and then in the next sentence described as very innocent. The narrator also explains that she enters this conversation "for her sake," so we can conclude that naïve means young and innocent and possibly in need of help. The next word we encounter is laissez-faire, which is used to describe our government's economic policy, so we know that it refers to something political and relates to economics. In the next sentence, it becomes clearer that the narrator is using the word to mean that our government is not regulating economic matters. Non sequitur is used to refer to the narrator's comment and the fact that it is completely unrelated to the entrepreneur's previous statement, so we can deduce that non sequitur means an unrelated statement. The entrepreneur does not want to appear gauche, so he is polite even though he is confused by the comment. We can conclude that gauche must mean impolite or lacking social graces. We can deduce that malaise must mean feeling ill or tired because the young woman needs to go home and rest. Finally, the entrepreneur asks the young woman to "rendezvous at the park the next day," so we can conclude that rendezvous must mean meet.
- malaise. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- vendetta. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- naïve. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- non sequitur. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- rendezvous. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- vignette. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- ingenue. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- gauche. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- clichés. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- aficionado. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- avant-garde. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- blasé. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- élan. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- entrepreneur. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- epitome. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- laissez-faire. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- imbroglio. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- fait accompli. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- debut. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- bourgeois. If you got this question wrong, refer back to the word's definition.
- b.enthusiastic. Blasé means apathetic about something due to over indulgence. Enthusiastic would not be a synonym because it means to be excited about something.
- c.conventional. Avant-garde means original and creative, so conventional is not a synonym because it means lacking originality.
- c.knowledgeable. Naïve means simple and innocent, so knowledgeable is not a synonym because it means having knowledge.
- a.disinterest. Élan means spirit or enthusiasm, so disinterest is not a synonym because it means lacking interest.
- b.novice. An aficionado is an expert or devotee to something. A novice is someone who is new to some thing, so it is not a synonym.
- c.clear line of thought. A non sequitur is a statement that is not connected to the previous statement. A clear line of thought refers to several statements that follow each other, so it is not a synonym.
- d.retirement. A debut is a first appearance. Retirement means the end of a career, so it would not be a synonym of debut.
- a.novel. A vignette is a short descriptive piece, but a novel is a long written story, so it is not a synonym.
- c.original statement. A cliché is a statement or saying that has been so overused that it lacks meaning. An original statement is not a synonym because it means a statement that is new and has not been used before.
- c.healthy. Malaise means a feeling of sickness, but healthy means to feel well, so it is not a synonym.
- gauche. Gauche means lacking social grace or sophistication, the opposite of the meaning of the words in the group.
- naïve. Naïve means simple and innocent, the opposite of the meaning of the words in the group.
- bourgeois. Bourgeois means characteristics of the middle class and materialistic, the opposite of the words in the group.
- fait accompli. Fait accompli means a completed fact that is irreversible, the opposite of the words in the group.
- ingenue. An ingenue is a young naïve girl, the opposite of the words in the group.
- élan. Élan means spirit, enthusiasm, the opposite of the words in the group.
- imbroglio. An imbroglio is a complicated situation or an embarrassing misunderstanding, the opposite of the words in the group.
- blasé. Blasé means apathetic due to overindulgence in something, the opposite of the words in the group.
- vendetta. Vendetta means a feud of grudge characterized by retaliation, the opposite of the words in the group.
- aficionado. An aficionado is an expert, the opposite of the words in the group.
Crossword Puzzle Solution
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